This list of book recommendations by Dataminr experts provides 10 must-reads on risk theories, strategies and practices to help business leaders better understand the concept of risk and navigate today’s increasingly complex and evolving risk landscape.
According to the World Economic Forum’s 2024 Global Risks Report, AI-generated misinformation and disinformation, severe weather, and geopolitical complications are the biggest threats to organizations worldwide this year. Business leaders’ outlook on the risk landscape over the next two years is generally negative, and is expected to worsen over the next decade.
No matter the current outlook, risk is inevitable and something that all organizations have to deal with. That’s why we curated this list of 10 must-read books, recommended by our risk experts, to help business leaders and risk professionals better understand risk, as well as how to prepare their organizations for shocks and crises while strengthening business resiliency.
Check out our list of recommendations.
Against the Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk by Peter L. Bernstein
This book is an engaging read on the study of risk management and explores the evolution of mathematical and financial risks concepts through a historical and economist lens. The author delivers a lively account of the history of probability and risk, and argues that the notion of bringing risk under control—using today’s innovative risk management tools—is one of the central ideas that distinguishes our modern society from the past. Overall, it’s a riveting look at risk. Learn more.
The Art of Statistics: How to Learn From Data by David Spiegelhalter
In this comprehensive guide to statistical thinking, world-renowned statistician Spiegelhalter demystifies the perplexing world of data. The result: a refreshing take on how data literacy is changing the world. Readers will learn how to derive knowledge from raw data by focusing on the concepts and connections behind the math. Spiegelhalter also teaches us how to clarify our questions, assumptions, and expectations when approaching a problem—all crucial skills for managing and mitigating organizational risk.
The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable by Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Considered one of the most influential books of the past 75 years, the black swan theory explored by Taleb is now widespread and has altered modern thinking. A black swan refers to a highly improbable event with three principal characteristics: it’s unpredictable; it has a significant impact; and, after the event occurs, our explanation of the event makes it appear less random and more predictable than it seemed at first. Frequently referenced examples include the meteoric success of Google and the 9/11 terrorist attack in the U.S. Taleb challenges conventional wisdom, arguing that rare, unforeseeable occurrences (or risks) shape our world more than regular patterns—but also gives readers a captivating perspective that’s both enlightening and entertaining. Learn more.
The Diversity Bonus: How Great Teams Pay Off in the Knowledge Economy by Scott E. Page
In this book, the author explains how businesses can benefit from tapping the power of diversity. Page presents overwhelming evidence that teams with different kinds of thinkers outperform homogenous groups on complex tasks. Diverse organizations will have improved problem solving, increased innovation and more accurate predictions. As one Dataminr expert said, “diversity is especially beneficial to risk management, which requires creativity and the reframed questions that come from teams with cognitive diversity.” This book is a must-read for business leaders looking for new ways and approaches to championing diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Learn more.
Hello World: How to be Human in the Age of the Machine by Hannah Fry
This must-read, thought-provoking book delves into the profound impact of algorithms on every aspect of our lives. The author explores the complex intersection of humanity and technology, offering insights into the good, bad and ugly of the algorithms that surround us—with dashes of delightful blend of clarity and wit. As described by one of our risk experts, “Hello World is not just a book; it’s a laughter-packed journey through the maze of our digital existence and examines the evolving risks associated with our relationship with technology.” Learn more.
OSINT Techniques: Resources for Uncovering Online Information by Michael Bazzell (10th Edition)
Bazzell has a 20-year career in government investigating computer crimes and deeply cares about educating the OSINT community. His book is considered by many to be the go-to resource for all things related to open source intelligence (OSINT) and open source information (OSINF). The 10th edition brings six new chapters on recent OSINT investigative methods that will prove valuable to anyone working in the OSINT space as well as those in cybersecurity. Highly recommended by a Dataminr risk expert. Learn more.
Risk: A User’s Guide by General Stanley McChrystal and Anna Butrico
Co-author and retired four-star general Stanley McChrystal draws on his experience on the battlefield to help business leaders better understand how to effectively manage risk. In this book, he offers a battle-tested system for detecting and responding to risk, and explains his idea of the 10 dimensions of control that can be adjusted at any given time. The author argues that by closely monitoring these controls, organizations can maintain a healthy risk immune system that allows them to effectively anticipate, identify, analyze, and act on risk. As one Dataminr risk expert described, “This book is much like how Sun Tzu’s The Art of War is an effective tale of competitive battles, full of insights and wisdom that have been applied in numerous disciplines, such as business, martial arts and sports, Risk: A User’s Guide offers that same level of insight for risk professionals.” Learn more.
Risk: A Very Short Introduction by Baruch Fischhoff and John Kadvany
This book is a concise yet enlightening introduction to the risk landscape. From the psychology of decision making to societal implications, authors Fischhoff and Kadvany break down the complexity of risk by drawing from simple conceptual frameworks such as decision theory and behavioral research. They also provide a brief but comprehensive exploration of what scientists have learned about people’s ways to deal with risks, apply those lessons to diverse examples, and demonstrate how understanding risk can inform our choices in life and policy making. Learn more.
Scary Smart: The Future of Artificial Intelligence and How You Can Save Our World by Mo Gawdat
In this book, Mo Gawdat, the former chief business officer of Google’s top-secret moonshot factory, brilliantly transforms the doom and gloom of AI domination into a side-splitting comedy—all while exploring what we can all do now to teach ourselves and our machines how to live better. Readers will find themselves laughing at Gawdat’s take on robots attending therapy for existential crises or his prediction of a world where toasters can outsmart us. Gawdat’s focus on embedding ethics into AI has been met with skepticism, but his proposals for humanity in this book are clear and thought-provoking. Learn more.
Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction by Philip E. Tetlock and Dan Gardner
This New York Times bestseller is a valuable read for risk professionals tasked with risk forecasting. Using logic and humor, Superforecasting offers the first demonstrably effective way to navigate the murky waters of prediction and improve our ability to /make predictions. Drawing on decades of research and the results of a government-funded forecasting tournament—in which laymen beat the benchmarks, competitors, prediction markets and intelligence analysts with access to classified information—the book shows readers how to learn from this group of laymen, whom the authors call “superforecasters.” Learn more.
Learn about Dataminr Pulse and how it helps organizations better detect and manage risk, thus improving business resiliency.